by: Helen Freedman
Americans for a Safe Israel extends most sincere condolences to the families of the 7 murdered by a suicide bomber on Wednesday, July 18, at the Burgas, Bulgaria airport. We also pray for the recovery of the over 30 wounded in the attack. We’re disturbed by the knowledge that the bomber has been identified as a Swedish citizen and former Guantanomo Bay detainee, Mehdi Ghezali. Although his rap sheet is filled with details of his association with Afghans, Algerians, Pakistanis, Saudis and Al-Qaida, he was held at Guantanomo from 2002-2004 and then released. Probably his record of “good behavior” earned him that opportunity, along with more than 50 other terrorists, who are all on the loose now, ready to maim and murder more innocent civilians, especially Israelis.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sees the fingerprints of Iran all over the bombing, as they were 18 years ago in Buenos Aires and throughout the world. He promises retaliation for this horrific deed.
It is heartwarming to note that in the midst of the tragedy, we have the courageous Israeli doctors and their medical teams responding immediately to the emergency. Two Israeli Air Force Hercules military planes have already brought 32 of the wounded back to Israel for treatment. Some who were critically injured were unable to be airlifted. The Prime Minister’s office singled out Prof. Gabriel Barbash, Director General of the Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center for going to Bulgaria and immediately organizing the treatment and evacuation of the wounded Israelis.
Zaka’s international delegation also flew immediately to Burgas where the volunteers began the work that they do of collecting the bodies and the remains. Because of the intensity of the blast, which totally incinerated one bus, and destroyed others parked nearby, the work of the Zaka people will be very difficult. We are in awe of their dedication to their holy work.
Israel has a long history of dealing with terrorism. It has become an expert in the field and its expertise has served to thwart many planned attacks. We are told that the Bulgarians were alerted to the fact that a terrorist attack was being planned. Tragically, this one was not stopped. Our hearts are heavy with the sadness of this horror. Ironically, it occurred shortly after President Obama had convened a Counter-terrorism Conference to study the subject. Of course, Israel had been excluded from that Conference, with the acquiescence of the Obama administration. Now President Obama offers his condolences. How empty those words are – how hollow!
Making the right decision on how the Israelis should respond to the crisis is difficult. Syria is on fire, with Assad moving his WMD around, and no one knowing into whose hands they will fall, or if he will use them on his enemies. Iran is a tinder box, threatening Israel, America and the world. Syria and Iran are allies. How will this play out? It’s difficult to know how to react in these circumstances. We pray that the Israel’s leaders will be blessed with wisdom to do the right thing.